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Series / Blood & Treasure

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Blood & Treasure is a 2019 Action-Adventure drama series, which is basically a combination of James Bond and Indiana Jones-type adventure.

The series follows Danny McNamara (Matt Barr), a former FBI agent turned antiquities expert, and Lexi Vaziri (Sofia Pernas), a professional thief and con-woman as they circle across the globe, securing ancient treasure before Karim Farouk (Oded Fehr), a seemingly-deceased terrorist use it to create a weapon of mass-destruction. It aired on May 21, 2019 with a 2-hour series premiere on CBS.

The series has been renewed for the second season, and premiered on Paramount+ on July 17.


Tropes include:

  • Accent On The Wrong Syllable: A running bit in Season 2 is Lexi insisting on saying "Gen-ghish Khan" rather than the usual "Gen-guhs" as she insists it's actually the right pronunciation.
  • Action Girl: Lexi, naturally for a master thief, she can hold her own in a fight.
    • Gwen even moreso. In fact, she only loses one fight in the entire to an assassin. Her fight with Lexi was a draw.
    • Dark Action Girl: The assassin working for Reece.
  • And the Adventure Continues: Season 1 ends with the words, "The Adventure Will Continue..."
  • All for Nothing: Keeler thought masterminding the theft of a stack of priceless paintings would leave him a millionaire for life. Too late, he found out that the paintings were so priceless that he couldn't find anyone willing to buy them who also wouldn't turn him in. He was thus forced to keep them to himself while continuing to work a routine job to barely make ends meet.
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  • Almost Kiss: Danny and Levi has this several times.
  • Analogy Backfire: In Season 2, a Hong Kong police inspector assures the gang that "this place is a fortress. It's not unlike your Alamo." They have to point out the tiny detail that everyone in the Alamo died, with the inspector surprised at that.
  • Ancient Order of Protectors: The Brotherhood of Serapis, the mysterious group racing against the characters in locating the tombs.
  • Being Evil Sucks: What everyone who wants to be at Reece’s side during the unveiling claims.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: It turns out that Jay Reece, not “Karim Farouk,” is behind the death of Lexi’s father and the imprisonments of Danny’s dad while employing his own henchmen at odds with the heroes, because he’s trying to conceal the fact that “Karim Farouk” the terrorist is his son… except Simon Hardwick turns out to be the real Karim paying and guiding the terrorist to attack his father by working as his financier. All three work against each other at some point.
  • Butt-Monkey: Aiden/Dwayne is on the receiving end of a lot of pain and humiliation. In the premiere alone, he has his entire operation dismantled, gets stuffed in a trunk, gets shot, is forced to hide in a coffin, and is poisoned.
  • Cruel and Unusual Death: The bioweapon that everyone dubs as ‘Mummy Cancer’.
  • Classy Cat-Burglar: Lexi is a resourceful art thief that uses all sorts of cons and gadgets in her work.
  • Curse of the Pharaoh: Some characters believe that all the bad things that happened in the show since the tombs have been discovered is because of this.
  • Contrived Coincidence: Danny and Lexi are in Casablanca, being hunted, out of resources and no idea what to do next. At which point, they see none other than Shaw playing the piano at the local bar. Danny lampshades it with "of all the gin joints in the world..."
  • Dark Is Not Evil: Lexi is often seen wearing black and other dark colours. Asim Massod, who the main characters initially suspect, also mostly wear dark clothing.
  • Didn't See That Coming: Simon in Season 2 when the Khan is killed only for Violet to take over as the new Khan.
  • Dirty Cop: Danny's father had been a cop who joined with some buddies to pull off a huge heist to let them all retire. While the heist was pulled off, they were eventually caught.
    • Asim Massod was suspected of this too, although of Egyptian intelligence and not of cops.
  • Designated Girl Fight: Lexi is bound to get into these, with the exemption of Gwen where it was more of a tie, she usually wins.
  • The Dog Was the Mastermind: In both seasons 1 and 2 the person presented as the Big Bad was just a surrogate, and the actual Big Bad was a minor character who had been working with the team the whole time.
  • Don't Touch It, You Idiot!: Considering it’s all ancient artifacts, characters are often reminded of this.
  • Dwindling Party: The initial task force hunting Karim Farouk, character after character keeps getting killed.
  • Eating the Eye Candy: Lexi does this to Danny when she catches him naked after a shower, with her even doing a Head-Tiltingly Kinky gesture as she looks straight at his crotch. When Danny notices he tells her My Eyes Are Up Here.
  • Elite Mooks: Just as much as there is cannon fodder there are some capable enemies for our characters to fight.
  • Evil Plan: It turns out everything in Season 2 has been part of a calculated plan by Violet/The Great Khan, seemingly to unleash a virus that targets people by their DNA. But Danny and Lexi realize there is no virus, that the "white hat hackers" were killed to prevent cyberattacks on bank servers across Europe, and the seemingly "random" attacks earlier in the season were taking out security measures and throwing a panic in the world as a distraction to siphon money from banks across Europe. In short, this entire thing has been a massive heist of $1.5 trillion for Violet to finance her army.
  • Fake American: In-universe. Sofia Pernas is American and puts on a British accent as Lexi. In Season 2, she meets an old contact who hates British people so it turns out Lexi has been posing at an American for over two years with him.
  • Fake Brit: In-universe, Shaw claims to be an MI-6 agent. When he's caught, Danny and Lexi figure out he "borrowed" the identity of a dead agent and Shaw drops his British accent to reveal he's American.
  • Failed Attempt at Drama: Chuck wants to be a Large Ham when telling Danny and Lexi his discoveries, but their lack of reaction spoils it.
    Chuck: You guys are really, uh, draining all the fun out of this for me, you know that right?
  • Fridge Brilliance: The revelation that Reece is actually Farouk's father explains so much of Farouk's actions. It's the reason he specifically targets Reece's pipeline and other business enterprises, he's lashing out at the dad he felt abandoned him (not realizing Reece had no idea he even existed for years). It's also why Farouk was obsessed with Anthony and Cleopatra, because he knew how important they were to Reece and thus any way to hurt his father worked out for him.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Played with. Both seasons have villains who are from humble beginnings, but not humble lineages, who started out as petty criminals.
  • Ghostapo: What the Nazis in the backstory tried to do with Cleopatra. Amusingly, it wound up electrocuting all participants because of how stupid it was. Less amusingly, it also killed over a hundred people, on the surrounding town by drowning them when the dam failed.
  • Good Cop/Bad Cop: A Discussed Trope in "Code of the Hawaladar."
  • Guns Akimbo: At least one firefight uses this trope.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Asim pulls this, several episodes later Shaw tries and survives.
  • Hidden Depths: Just when it looks like Shaw is a bit thick-headed, he shows an amazing knowledge of history. In Season 2, he suggests getting into a building by the tunnels the British built during World War II in case of invasion, which Danny and Lexi knew nothing about.
    Shaw: Am I the only one who watches Discovery Channel?
  • Hollywood Homely: Danny is quite an attractive man, but people often describe him as ordinary or The Nondescript. Of course, no one says this of Lexi.
  • Hypocrisy Nod: Lexi chews Danny out for never telling her his dad was a thief and Danny points out she has no room to talk on "lies of omission."
  • Improvised Lockpick: Lexi is paranoid and prepared enough to hide lockpicks in the heel of her shoes.
  • Interpol Special Agent: Gwen as the show truly pushes the idea of Interpol being an international version of the FBI with its own special forces team.
  • Interrupted Bath: In "The Brotherhood of Serapis", Danny's shower is interrupted when he suddenly finds Lexi (who had been missing) casually standing in the bathroom with him. Turns into a Shower of Awkward when she starts ogling him.
  • Karmic Death: Karim dishes out plenty of these, from poisoning a scientist trying to extort more money to the intended victims of his bio weapon.
  • Kansas City Shuffle: The opening of Season 2 as it looks like Danny and Lexi broke up as Danny talks to museum curator Julia and Lexi shows up. Danny finds she has an RF transmitter to check the place and Lexi runs. Julia figures Lexi is after a piece inside the vault and goes to check while confessing to Danny that she forged documentation to take what she knew was a stolen item. She leads Danny to the vault where Lexi has the door opened...because Danny swapped the transmitter for another one to open the security doors for the arriving cops. Because they now have probable cause due to the "attempted theft," the cops can search the place to discover the stolen artwork inside as Julia realizes too late Danny and Lexi set her up.
  • Killed Offscreen: Reece in the Season 2 premiere.
  • Kleptomaniac Hero: Lexi is a thief after all.
  • Know When to Fold 'Em: Whenever a character is forced by either Danny or Lexi to do something.
  • Last Request: Asim asks our characters to find the truth.
  • Loves Only Gold: Lexi and many criminally-inclined characters first start off as this.
  • MacGuffin: The coffins of Antony and Cleopatra.
  • Man Behind the Man: An intriguing variation. It turns out that Farouk is the product of an affair a younger Reece had with a woman. She wrote to tell him about it but Reece's own father kept the letters as he didn't want his son throwing his life away for her. Finding out after his dad's death, Reece set up a trust fund for his son, Karim. Too late, Reece discovered that Farouk was using the fund to finance his terrorist attacks. Thus, much of his actions is Reece trying to cover up the connection so it doesn't ruin his family name.
  • Missing Mom: Lexi's mom died when she was young and her father thinks this is partially the reason why she fell into a life of crime.
  • Missing Steps Plan: The painting heist turned into this for Keeler. He was so focused on masterminding the theft of the priceless paintings that he never considered just how impossibly difficult it would be to sell them afterwards. Thus he never gets to Step 3: Retire as a millionaire who never has to work another day in his life.
  • Moral Event Horizon: In-universe as Reece kills Anna to keep secret how he's Farouk's father.
  • Mundane Solution: Heading to see a director at the Cario museum, Lexi talks of how tricky security is and how it's going to be a complex series of moves to get inside undetected.
    Gwen: Or, we can just use this. (shows badge)
  • My Greatest Failure: When Danny believed Karim was dead, he got Lexi's father a new life and antiques' dealership in New York. No sooner than moving day, the shop is bombed and Mr. Vaziri is killed. Lexi and Danny broke up, and Danny resigned from the FBI.
  • Mystery Cult: The Brotherhood of Serapis, a century-old Egyptian cult that is involved with the mystery of the sarcophagus of Anthony and Cleopatra.
  • New Old Flame: Danny and Lexi who used to date in the past and had a rough breakup. They have a lot of UST in most of their interactions.
  • Necessarily Evil: How the Brotherhood sees their methods, which includes murder and blackmail.
  • "Not So Different" Remark: Simon Hardwick/Karim Farouk tells Lexi that she should understand his actions against his father, Jay Reece. He also tells Danny that they all on the same side due to Reece hurting all of them. However, Lexi makes it clear that she wouldn't hurt innocent people like he almost did, and Danny arrest him while calling him a bad guy.
  • Oh, Crap!: When the characters realize the truth about Reece, and Farim, and where exactly the attack is happening. Considering the show premise, they actually get this a lot.
  • Oh, No... Not Again!: Shaw's reaction when his quiet job in Casablanca is interrupted by Danny and Lexi showing up.
    • Then the duo get it a few episodes later when Shaw pops up in the middle of a deal they're trying to work.
  • Once an Episode: Wilhelm Scream.
  • Only in It for the Money: Lexi only agrees to work with Danny again when he offers her a finder's fee. Subverted when she finds out Karim Farouk is still alive and wants Revenge on him for killing her father.
  • Pay Evil unto Evil: Simon Hardwick, a man who was Karim’s prisoner for a whole year, is the one who shoots him.
  • Pocket Protector: Thank goodness Shawn has that medallion in his pocket.
  • Pop-Cultural Osmosis Failure:
    • A Running Gag of the show is Lexi not getting references to classic movies or TV shows.
    • He's truly annoyed when they meet an imprisoned Simon in season 2 and Lexi is baffled at his talk that "he's Lectering us."
    • Subverted for laughs when she goes to Danny's old home and says she "always figured you crashed to Earth in a spaceship with cape." Danny notes how "the one reference you know is to mock me."
  • The Real Remington Steele: In both seasons 1 and 2 the person presented as the Big Bad turns out to be a decoy masquerading as their boss. After their deaths, the identity of the real mastermind is revealed.
  • Red Herring: In the flashback of the failed attempt to arrest Karim, we see Asim making a phone call right before Karim’s car diverts from the route. The characters and audience are fooled into thinking he was the leak.
  • The Reveal:
    • Lexi is shocked to discover that Danny's father happens to be a legendary thief she actually admires.
    • It turns out Reece is actually Farouk's father and has been doing all he can to cover it up so it doesn't ruin his family name.
    • The man everyone thought was Farouk is actually just a follower. Simon is the real Farouk.
    • In season 2, it turns out the Great Khan was just some underling and Violet has been the real Khan all along.
  • Shout-Out:
    • Obviously, the episode set in Casablanca has plenty of references to the classic movie. It's even noted by Shaw saying tourists expect this stuff.
    • The final scene of the first season which has Danny, Lexi, and their friends visiting the Antony and Cleopatra exhibition in Cairo before saying goodbye as "Clair de Lune" plays in the background is very similar to the fountain scene near the end of Ocean's Eleven.
    • Invoked by Simon meeting Danny in Season 2.
  • Spotting the Thread: Danny is dubious about Kate killed by a random Khan follower because her phone history shows a fingerprint search she did on Violet had been deleted.
  • Staging the Eavesdrop: Danny and Lexi do this in Season 2 when they realize their place is bugged, using a carefully worded script to set up a fake meeting to sucker the folks listening in. Shaw, however, is a bit...difficult following his lines.
  • Stock Scream: Every single episode contains a Wilhelm Scream.
  • A Taste of Their Own Medicine: Invoked by Simon in Season 2 when he discovers Violet was the Great Khan all along, just as he had made everyone else believe another guy was Farouk. He even accuses Violet of "following my playbook."
  • Too Dumb to Live: A scientist actually tries to hold a ruthless terrorist he knows has killed scores of people up for more money. The result? As Farouk promises, the guy "never has to worry about money again."
  • Those Wacky Nazis: They feature in the Back Story, having taken Cleopatra's sarcophagus back in 1944.
  • Translation Convention: Many people that were previously subtitled inexplicably begin speaking in English among themselves.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Reece. It's clear he truly wants to bring Anthony and Cleopatra to the world which he sees as great for Egypt and is willing to do whatever it takes to do it.
  • We Will Meet Again: Simon Hardwick says this at the end of Season One.
  • Wham Line: After the Great Khan is killed, Violet suddenly takes his throne to declare "the Khan is still alive...and she does not to be challenged."
  • Witness Protection: Lexi and her father were put into witness protection when Danny convinced them to help him catch Farouk, but he gets away and ends up killing Lexi's father.
  • Working with the Ex: Danny and Lexi used to be going steady, then her father was killed and she blamed his incompetence in catching the terrorist responsible. Danny is the one to reach out because he needs Lexi's specific skillset, but it's obvious their old flame has not totally fizzled out.
  • Wounded Gazelle Gambit: After killing Kate, Violet takes Simon's suggestion to send in an expendable agent. Hearing her cries, Danny and Lexi enter to find a bloodied Violet with the dead "assassin" she claims killed Kate. Too bad for her Danny has his suspicions.
  • You Killed My Father: No one doubts that Karim ordered the hit on Lexi's father, and if he's in proximity, she will abandon the mission to go after him.